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Indian Pediatr. 2009 Oct;46(10):849-54. Epub 2009 Apr 1.

Physical work capacity of young underprivileged school girls impact of daily vs intermittent iron folic acid supplementation: a randomized controlled trial.

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1
Department of Foods and Nutrition, The Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, Vadodara, India.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To assess impact of daily and intermittent iron-folate (IFA) supplementation on physical work capacity of underprivileged schoolgirls in Vadodara.

DESIGN:

Randomized controlled trial.

SETTING:

Municipal Primary schools.

PARTICIPANTS:

Schoolgirls (n=163) in the age group of 9-13 years.

INTERVENTION:

Three randomly selected schools were given IFA tablets (100 mg elemental iron + 0.5 mg folic acid) either once weekly or twice weekly or daily for one year. The fourth was the control school.

OUTCOME MEASURES:

Hemoglobin, modified Harvards Step test for physical work capacity.

RESULTS:

All three IFA supplemented groups showed significant improvement in number of steps climbed and recovery time compared to controls; with impact being relatively better in girls with higher Hb gain (> 1 g/dL) vs. lower Hb gain. Similarly, higher the frequency of dosing better was the impact- it being the best in daily IFA group. Twice weekly IFA was as good as daily IFA under conditions of good compliance.

CONCLUSION:

Twice weekly IFA supplementation is comparable to daily IFA in terms of beneficial effects on physical work capacity in young girls.

PMID:
19430082
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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